~ continued ~
Numerous research reports tell us that time spent in nature lifts our moods and improves our health in many ways. I head outside every day (and hope you do too) to soak in some of nature’s gifts to us. Every time I’m outside my experience is different, whether it’s a different cloud formation or the sound of the wind blowing through the trees; there is always something new or different. A few deep breaths and some quiet time rejuvenates me. Sometimes birds are hiding in the underbrush, and I need to “pish” at them to bring them out to greet me. I always give them a hearty hello! Sometimes the birds are in large flocks. The Northern Mockingbird, who has claimed the holly berries in my yard, tries to chase off the flock to protect his winter food supply. In the mornings when I go out, the birds seem to look right back at me as if they are saying, “Where are the sunflower seeds for break-fast”?
We are also experiencing significant changes this year with our elected leaders at the County and State levels. These changes provide an opportunity to bring new ideas to the governance of Fairfax County as well as to the Commonwealth of Virginia. At the Fairfax County level, the turnover in Supervisors and resulting appointments to the Planning Commission and other Boards and Commissions means that there is a fresh need to educate our new officials about the extraordinary and very special place that is Huntley Meadows Park (HMP). Please take the time to attend the upcoming open houses for our elected officials, and talk to them about HMP. Tell them about the importance of open spaces and natural areas like HMP since these protect us from the adverse impacts of climate change. Refer to recent articles in the last few newsletters here: http://fohmp.org/newsletter%20archives.html.
It is also important for us to advocate more broadly for the County and State policies that are needed to conserve our irreplaceable forests, wetlands, and other nat-ural habitats for this generation and all that will follow. We need more voices out there advocating for our parks, open spaces and natural areas, especially for HMP. I hope to see you at the upcoming open houses and vari-ous events hosted by our elected officials!
I hope to see you on the trails!
Cathy Ledec, President